Defensive Coaches: Details Matter Too

By FirstDown PlayBook on Oct 15, 2021

The way a player gets coached should always be through his to her eyes. It’s a detail that gets overlooked on a regular basis, but details matter to coaches too. This is a big one. There is no earthly explanation of why a defensive coaches would teach players from the offensive side of the ball.

You are coaching kids who are already battling space relationship on the field. That is hard enough in itself. Coach wants me to line up at 5 yards deep and when the ball is snapped do this. Oh yeah, coach says to look at this player on offense, not the ball. He wants me to read my key, not the ball. The other day though when the ball went up in the air, he said I never found the ball.

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Kids have a lot to think about without having to turn the whole picture around in their brain. Why not do that for them? You only get so many reps on the field. Your defensive drawing is a rep. A rep that, if done properly, can be used over and over by your players who want to get better even when they are not with you, the defensive coach.

If you think that this is no big deal, then I would offer up that you should draw your offensive plays from the defensive perspective. Blasphemy! I hear the offensive coaches already, and they are correct. Not really sure why we see so many defensive coaches not take the same pride in their work.

Defensive coaches, do yourself a favor. Never go to visit a college or NFL team and draw your defense from the offense’s perspective. They will be polite but only because they want to recruit your players.

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Stop and look at these two diagrams of the exact same play. Take your coach ball cap off for a second and play the position. It’s just lazy not to draw this up the way your players will see it.

As you will notice, the defensive drawing still primarily has the offensive play on it. You will have some diagrams that have your players’ assignments on it but at some point you need your players to see what is coming at them.

“Oh but coach my kids see it on Hudl”. Stop. They do not. Your players see who they are going to play against that week. That video that you give them from the height of your stands does not help them learn what they are about to have to do in a game.

So we will get off of our soapbox for now but if you are a defensive coach, strongly consider going the extra step to teach your players. Is it that much more work? Not if you use FirstDown PlayBook. It’s actually a matter of two clicks on your keyboard.Want to see it for yourself? Check it out right here for free.